Holdsworth has eyes on much-improved campaign

Chorley Cricket first team captain Andy Holdsworth
Chorley Cricket first team captain Andy Holdsworth

Andrew Holdsworth feels his Chorley side could be the dark horses in this year’s Northern Cricket League season.

The Windsor Park outfit finished 11th in last year’s competition with inconsistency proving to be a real Achilles heel.

But despite their league woes, 2014 will be best remembered for their excellent cup form.

Chorley shocked many in reaching the semi-final of the National Knockout Trophy.

Despite coming up short against Sandiacre Town, their cup form proved they can compete with the best.

The club were dealt a blow during the closed season as top bowler Billy Smith left to move to Germany.

Despite the loss of Smith, however, Holdsworth feels he has people who can step up to the plate.

“Billy Smith is a huge loss, but I do believe it gives others an opportunity to step up to the challenge,” he said.

“Kieran McCullagh, Chris Harty and Jimmy Lee will all be pushing to fill his boots and show they can lead the attack.

“Consistency is key this season – we had a great run in the National Knockout last year and a great experience for the players, club and town.

“However, as a group of players we are judged how we perform over 24 games and the top four is the main aim.”

The club opted not to re-sign last year’s professional Mohammed Jamal and they have instead signed overseas amateur Brenton McDonald.

All-rounder McDonald, is a leg-break bowler and a left-handed batsman and Holdsworth is excited by the impact McDonald could have.

“Having an overseas professional this season will be a huge boost to the club,” he said.

“Not only will it raise the performances of others on the field but the impact he will have off the field on the coaching aspect will be invaluable.

“I feel like we are well equipped this year to raise a few eyebrows.

“We have an outstanding professional and this will help boost our confidence and assist us against the top teams.”